Unknown Marissa Koziel Killer- Illinois- 2018 Feb 5, 2023 13:16:15 GMT -5
Post by Scumhunter on Feb 5, 2023 13:16:15 GMT -5
(Above photo credit: patch.com)
JOLIET, IL — Next week marks the five-year anniversary of Marissa Koziel's disappearance, but despite the passage of time, Will County Sheriff's officials maintain confidence that the person responsible for the Joliet Township unsolved murder will still be arrested and prosecuted.
"It's not sitting in our cold case room in a box," Will County Sheriff's Chief Deputy Dan Jungles told Joliet Patch during Thursday's interview. "It's actively being worked on by Detective Tom Hannon. He's had it now for probably the longest. He's very familiar with the case."
Prior to Hannon, the homicide investigation had been reassigned to other detectives over the years due to promotions, retirements and department transfers, according to Jungles. He believes that generating more publicity about Koziel's unsolved murder may help fellow detectives working to solve her crime.
In February 2018, Koziel's body was dumped in the 1500 block of California Avenue in Joliet's unincorporated Forest Park area. On Feb. 23, 2018, several teenagers walking along the street made the grim discovery around 5:15 p.m., and they immediately called police. According to police, Koziel may have been killed weeks before she was found.
The Will County Coroner's Office announced that the 21-year-old woman with strong ties to the Lincoln-Way area, Manhattan and Joliet had died from a single gunshot wound.
Jungles told Joliet Patch there were a couple of key factors that put sheriff's detectives at a disadvantage from the outset of her homicide.
"One of the biggest obstacles that detectives faced in this investigation was the time delay of Marissa being reported missing until she was found deceased," Jungles explained. "She was reported missing on Feb. 14, 2018, and she was found deceased on Feb. 23, 2018."
In addition, Jungles explained, "the absolute last time we know she was seen alive was Feb. 1," 2018.
Because her body was found outside the city of Joliet's boundaries, the Will County Sheriff's Office is spearheading the investigation — not the Joliet Police Department.
Another obstacle facing detectives was that Koziel did not have a permanent address at the time of her disappearance and slaying.
"Marissa lived a high-risk lifestyle, and her movements were transient in nature," Jungles pointed out this week. "She did not have a cellular telephone, and all her communications were done via an iPad that was only Wi-Fi enabled."
Back in 2018, sheriff's officials revealed that Koziel's body was dumped along the wooded area of California Avenue, however, she was murdered elsewhere.
"Our investigation did take us outside Will County to other hotels," Jungles added.
Prior to her death, Koziel had been staying at the Rodeway Inn, 1730 McDonough St. That hotel now has a different name. It's on Joliet's west side near Larkin Avenue and Interstate 80.
"Marissa was last seen at the Rodeway in Joliet, and she frequented many of the cheaper hotels and motels in the area," Jungles said. "We have interviewed numerous individuals connected to Marissa over the years. Some of her friends and acquaintances have provided detectives with a lot of good information that is relevant to this case. Others, on the other hand, have not, and that is due to their high-risk lifestyles and associated criminal activity."
For the integrity of the homicide investigation, Jungles said he did not want to disclose whether detectives have identified a suspect in this case.
As the five-year anniversary nears, Jungles hopes someone will come forward and contact Detective Hannon with additional information surrounding her slaying.
That may be someone who has never previously spoken to sheriff's detectives, or someone previously interviewed in regard to Koziel's death, but for various reasons, was reluctant to provide more insight or details regarding her homicide.
People who may have helpful information are asked to call Sheriff's Detective Hannon at 815-727-8574 extension 4965, or email him at [email protected]
"There is no doubt in our minds that there are individuals out there that know what happened to Marissa," Jungles said Thursday.
"There is a lot of good evidence and a lot of good statements that can hopefully lead us to a conclusion. With the anniversary of her disappearance, it's always good to get these cases where no arrests have been made ... out in the public's eye again," Jungles noted.
On Thursday, Joliet Patch asked Jungles if sheriff's detectives have determined a motive for Koziel's killing.
"That is not something I am willing to share at this point," Jungles answered.
When asked if Koziel's homicide is one where detectives are optimistic an arrest will be made, Jungles offered a one word answer.
He also pointed out that for the crime of murder, there is no statute of limitations in terms of prosecuting the person responsible.
Jungles went on to explain that, "in some murder investigations, there are a lot of times you hit walls right away, and you never fully recover from that in the case. In this particular case, whatever walls we encountered in this investigation, we overcame rather quickly."
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